Why We Meditate–A Quick Answer
The purpose of mediation is not greater head knowledge, but solid soul transformation. It’s a slow, deep process not to be rushed. Our spiritual walk grows us closer to Christ and allows Him to transform us with the help of the Holy Spirit. From that will come our love for others, our gifts, and our mission. Deepening your walk is the cornerstone of Christianity, and meditating on scripture is a vital element. If you’d like to learn more about why we meditate, visit the post Pondering God with Christian Meditation.
On Mondays, I offer a suggested meditation for the week. Learning by example is one of the best ways to get comfortable with a new process and help get your bearings, so along with the scripture, I provide a look at my personal meditation process with the verse. But this is just a starting place. My suggestions are not meant to be a prescription, just a way to get going. Training wheels.
I encourage you to eventually rely completely on the Holy Spirit. Follow His guidance to show you what you need to meditate on and what questions/images to ponder. Until you’re comfortable connecting with Him and hearing from God, this is a great place to start. We will use the same scripture every day for seven days, but feel free to return to it or stay on one verse for as long as you need.
Prepare to Meditate on Scripture
In preparation for meditation, I like to write out the scripture in a small (very small) notebook or on an index card. I enjoy looking at my own handwriting instead of a screen, but you can also keep the verse on an image in your phone for easy access throughout the day. There are many ways to interact with the verse to make it more personal: color it in, say it out loud, sing it, talk about it with a friend, etc.
Begin with an opening prayer. Ask the Lord to be with you, and the Spirit to guide you as you come to Him.
Take some deep breaths. Calm your heart, relax your mind, and allow the Spirit to come close.
Slowly read through the verse. Allow images of the verse to come to mind. Picture the nature of the scripture in its entirety.
Slowly read through line by line. Ponder the words chosen in the verse, and question God and yourself as you go.
Stop when something piques your interest. This is often the quiet prompting of the Lord. Sit on it awhile, and allow your mind to probe its deeper truths.
Be quiet. As you come to a deep truth, conviction, or prompting, be still. Allow quiet space in this process. If your mind wanders, re-read the line/word you stopped at. Allow God to provide a full response.
End in prayer. Thank the Lord for His presence and ask Him to guide the rest of your time together (scripture reading, prayer, journaling, etc). Ask Him to be with you for the rest of your day, and give you the power to dwell on Him in the midst of life.
Return and Rest. Schedule time throughout your day to quiet your mind and ponder the verse again. Let the Spirit guide your time. It may be the whole verse; it may be an image; it may be a question He’s presented to you. I use breath prayers frequently throughout my day.
Breaking Down the Scriptures
In my Monday Meditation posts, I break the scriptures down and include questions or imagery to further explore and connect with the Lord. Again, these are an example, and I encourage you to step away from them when you are comfortable to develop your own conversation with the Lord. If you feel compelled, create your own questions/images and journal about them. It’s a wonderful way to chronicle your time with God. As long as you’re submitting to the Lord, asking for his guidance, and are listening for the Spirit, there is no wrong way to go about this.
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If you have any questions about who Jesus is, what He’s done, and why we follow Him, please feel free to contact me directly. I’m always available. If you’d like to explore on your own, you can visit the article The Gospel: Perfect Minimalism.